Draught(also “Draft”). This is the vertical distance between the waterline and the keel. During construction of a vessel, the marks showing the draught are cut into each side of the stem and sternpost and clearly painted from a certain distance below the light draught to a certain distance below above the loaded draught.

Days. When a charterparty provides for laytime to be fixed or calculable this can be referred to a number of "days".

Deadweight charters. Bulk carriers are sometimes fixed on the basis of a guaranteed deadweight capacity of cargo at certain lumpsum freight. This method of chartering is followed in trades where charterers wish to have freedom of action as to the type of grain they intend to ship, either heavy grain, light grain or a combination of both kinds.

Down to her marks. This expression means that the vessel has been loaded to her maximum permissible draught, either winter, summer or tropical loadlines, as the case may be.

Disbursements. This expression covers all payments made by the ship’s agents for port charges, stevedoring expenses, tug hire, customs fees, stores, bunkers, water, etc., on behalf of owners. The agents may charge a certain disbursements’ commission on such advances, e.g., 2½ per cent.


Deviation. Under the Marine Insurance Act, if a ship, without lawful excuse, deviates from the voyage contemplated by the policy, the insurer is discharged from liability from the time of deviation, and it is immaterial that the ship may have regained her route before any loss occurs.

Depth. The depth is the vertical distance measured from the keel to the deck. The extreme depth is the depth measured at the ship’s side from the uppermost continuous deck to the lower point of the keel. The moulded depth is measured from the top of the keel plate (the “base line”) to the underside (that is, the heel) of the deck beam at the ship’s side amidships.


Deck cargoes. Many cargoes can be carried on deck because of their size or weight of individual units. Ondeck cargo is prone to damage and/or loss overboard and the carrier should try to reduce his liability accordingly.

Document of title. In modern international trade and shipping this is probably the most important characteristic of the bill of lading. A "document of title" is a document that enables the holder (the person who "possesses" it) to deal with the goods described in it as if he was the owner. "Title" is the right to ownership. "Ownership" can be explained as the right of using, altering, disposing of (that is, selling) and destroying the goods. This "ownership" or "title" can be transferred by a formal transfer of the document, such transfer being an "endorsement" and/or delivery of the document itself.

Days on demurrage. These are days by which the agreed number of laydays for loading or discharge is exceeded. In some charters a limited fixed number of days on demurrage is agreed, in addition to the laytime allowed. Shipowners are entitled to damages for detention if, after demurrage days have expired, further delay is experienced.


Date line. When steaming from West to East time is lost for each time zone. Conversely, when proceeding from East to West time is gained.

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